Six Cavaliers Earn Spots in Preseason WIN, AWN Rankings
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Six Virginia wrestlers have been tabbed in the Amateur Wrestling News and Wrestling Insider Newsmagazine preseason rankings. As a team, Virginia is ranked 21st in WIN’s preseason Tournament Power Index.
Derek Valenti (Sr., Newton, N.J.) was ranked fourth by WIN and eighth by AWN at 149 pounds. A reigning All-American, Valenti took eighth place at 149 at the 2011 NCAA Championships. He finished the 2010-11 season with a 27-15 record and took runner-up honors at the ACC Championships. Valenti rattled off 15 wins in his final 19 matches en route to All-America honors.
Matt Snyder (R-Jr., Lewistown, Pa.) was ranked eighth by AWN and 10th by WIN at 125 pounds. Snyder finished one win shy of All-America status last year at the NCAA Championships. The ACC runner-up, Snyder posted a 26-11 record during the 2010-11 season.
Joe Spisak (So., Boiling Springs, Pa.) was ranked 18th by WIN at 133 pounds. Spisak was the ACC runner-up and an NCAA qualifier last season, posting a 23-16 record.
Nick Nelson (R-Sr., Pittsburgh, Pa.) was tabbed 16th by AWN and 17th by WIN at 141 pounds. Nelson was sidelined with an injury for most of the 2010-11 season but rebounded to take third place at the ACC Championships to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Championships. He finished the year with an 11-3 record.
Jon Fausey (R-So., Dalmatia, Pa.) was ranked 15th by WIN and 20th by AWN at 184 pounds. He advanced to the NCAA Championships last year as a redshirt freshman and scored a pair of wins at NCAAs. Fausey finished the year with a 29-10 record.
Mike Salopek (R-Jr., North Huntingdon, Pa.) stood 15th in the WIN rankings and 19th according to AWN at 197 pounds. Salopek was hampered by injuries for much of the 2010-11 season but after offseason surgery he should again prove to be a big factor in the UVa lineup. Salopek 11-6 last season.
Virginia opens its season Nov. 5 when it plays host to Anderson and Campbell at Memorial Gymnasium.